The Book Thief Audiobook [Free Download by Trial]

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The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

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The CliffsNotes study guide on Zusak's The Book Thief supplements the original literary work, giving you background information about the author, an introduction to the work, a graphical character map, critical commentaries, expanded glossaries, and a comprehensive index, all for you to use as an educational tool that will allow you to better understand the work. This study guide was written with the assumption that you have read The Book Thief. Reading a literary work doesn't mean that you immediately grasp the major themes and devices used by the author; this study guide will help supplement your reading to be sure you get all you can from Zusak's The Book Thief. CliffsNotes Review tests your comprehension of the original text and reinforces learning with questions and answers, practice projects, and more. For further information on Zusak's The Book Thief, check out the CliffsNotes Resource Center at IN THIS AUDIOBOOK • Hear an Introduction to The Book Thief • Explore themes, character development, and recurring images in the Critical Commentaries • Examine in-depth Character Analyses • Reinforce what you learn to further your study online at




  • Listening to Zusak's "I am the Messenger" on a whim made me realize that he is an incredibly talented writer with a knack for storytelling. After reading numerous reviews raving about how exceptional The Book Thief is, I couldn't resist giving it a chance. Despite having made a personal vow years ago to steer clear of any more books, TV shows, or movies about WWII and the Holocaust, I decided to go against my own rule. Please understand, I acknowledge the significance of these topics, but I reached a point where I felt I had experienced enough and didn't want to subject myself to the emotional devastation caused by revisiting the horrors of that time. In hindsight, I should have stuck to my decision, because immersing yourself in The Book Thief means willingly subjecting yourself to a great deal of heartache. However, it does offer a fresh perspective (albeit still heartbreaking) as we witness the life of a young girl in foster care, living in a German town that endures the many hardships brought on by the war. To make matters even more challenging, her foster family takes in a Jewish individual, further complicating their lives. The writing itself is superb, with thoughtful and well-developed main characters. The narration is exceptional, adding depth to the overall experience. All in all, it is a beautifully executed piece of work. Just be prepared for the emotional toll it may take.
  • I gotta say, I'm a little confused by all the rave reviews for this book. Personally, I found the story to be a bit sluggish and aimless. Sure, the historical backdrop was intriguing, but I struggled to stay engaged. And the whole narrative being told from the perspective of death, with everything described in colors? That was just too abstract and irritating for my taste. Overall, this book was just average at best in my opinion.
  • I really dug the plot of this book, and felt a deep bond with the characters. But man, the ending was straight up savage and it totally messed with my vibe. It made it hard for me to recollect the fact that I was straight up loving the story until that point. I'm still on the fence about whether I should put this book on blast or not. Life's harsh enough as it is - I prefer my books to leave me with those good vibes in the end!
  • While this book didn't quite live up to its hype, it was still a great listen. I always struggle to find good fiction, so I decided to give this one a shot since it was a bestseller. The narrator of the story is death itself. He shares the tale of a young girl who becomes an orphan due to the political chaos in Nazi Germany. She is then taken in by a simple Munich housepainter and his wife. Though they may appear rough and unrefined, they possess a profound love and courage. They risk their lives by hiding a Jewish man in their basement. So why is it called "The Book Thief"? The protagonist, Lisa (apologies if I spelled it wrong), starts off illiterate but gradually becomes an avid reader. However, books are scarce during this time of turmoil, poverty, and conflict. Not only are they scarce, but they are also dangerous to possess. Lisa rescues books from the burning bonfires set by the Nazis in their relentless campaign to impose their ideology on the people. It's a poignant and touching story of a young girl trying to navigate her way through this strange and perilous environment. Germany is at war with the rest of the world, and they are beginning to lose. Every man, young or old, is at risk of being conscripted to fight in Russia. The civilian population faces the constant threat of Allied bombing raids, while Jews are being sent to concentration camps. Against this backdrop, Lisa manages to find moments of normalcy and experiences of childhood and adolescence. However, it's evident that this small community, like the rest of Germany, is doomed, and very few will survive.
  • I just finished listening to The Book Thief a few minutes ago, and I honestly believe it's the best book I've ever read, and trust me, I've read a lot of books. There's something about this story that truly touched my heart like no other. It's simultaneously heartbreaking and uplifting. The characters felt so vivid and real to me as I listened. There were moments when I even forgot that they were fictional. I couldn't help but shed tears at the end, which rarely happens because I usually remind myself that it's just a story. But this book felt so authentic that these endearing characters and their lives will forever stay in my heart. I absolutely adored this book, and I can't wait to listen to it again in the future. The narration was fantastic, and the writing was simply flawless.
  • I really wanted to enjoy "The Book Thief" like many other people who have praised it. It has received numerous positive reviews and has gained popularity. However, I didn't quite jump on the bandwagon for this one. Despite my reservations, I still keep it on my iPod and occasionally revisit it between more enjoyable listens. Personally, I think I would have connected more with the story if it had been narrated by a female, especially since the main character is a female. Additionally, I would have preferred a reading without any specific dialect. When I read a physical book, I don't imagine characters speaking with an accent, so why should I feel obligated to listen to an audiobook that way? I understand that some listeners appreciate the authenticity that accents and dialects bring, but it's simply a matter of personal preference for me. Regional accents can certainly bring depth to a narration, and it seems that this is how the produces their audiobooks. However, for me, it adds unnecessary dramatic effect, detracts from the accessibility of the book, and doesn't make for a pleasant listening experience.
  • This audiobook is an engaging and fast-paced listen that will easily captivate its audience. The narration by the nameless character, who represents Death, has a smooth and comforting rhythm. Death is portrayed as tired and overworked during World War II, silently observing the people he encounters. His presence affects everyone, and some are even able to confront him directly. While many resist Death, there are those who welcome him as a release from suffering. Death pays a visit to Liesel's family, the main character, where he observes the young German girl, her foster parents, and her friends and enemies. Among the characters in the story is Max, a young Jewish man hiding with Liesel's foster parents, which is a dangerous situation in Nazi Germany during the 1940s. This story offers a unique perspective on the rise of Hitler and Nazism, without disregarding the struggles of the German people who simply want to provide for their families. They are helpless witnesses to the spread of fanatical hatred, with Jews being blamed for every problem. Their families suffer as their loved ones are forcefully taken away to fight for the delusional Fuhrer. Despite the war-torn setting, the book also explores the resilience of ordinary people. Children still find joy in play, while parents struggle to provide for and protect them. They witness the persecution of Jews, but most are too terrified to offer any kind of support. Those who do show compassion are harshly punished. Overall, this audiobook is a captivating and emotional read, presenting a mix of triumphs and tragedies in a charming manner.
  • "The Book Thief" is actually a surprisingly light read, despite its heavy subject matter of death and life in Nazi Germany during World War II. The narrator, Death, provides a touch of humor and charm, even though he is overwhelmed by the immense destruction of the war. Death takes great care with each of his human consignments and shows a haunting interest in a select few who are still alive. The story follows a young girl who grows up with a foster family amidst the horrors of war and the challenges of adolescence. Although "The Book Thief" seems to be aimed at young teenagers, it is compelling enough for adults to enjoy and even share with their children. If you decide to pick up this book, make sure to see it through until the end. The conclusion holds the most powerful aspect of the story, making the preceding parts worth it. For young readers, this is a captivating and emotionally charged tale of war, death, and genocide that manages to strike a balance without overwhelming. The narration is particularly strong and clear, adding an enjoyable expressiveness to the characters. Personally, I liked this book, but it didn't quite capture my heart.
  • I can't believe that just 5 stars is all I can give - this book deserves a solid 10 stars, it is absolutely mind-blowing! Seriously, I am in awe! Don't let the Young Adult label fool you - I've been hooked on audiobooks for ages and this is the first time I've felt so deeply moved that I felt compelled to write a review. How is this masterpiece not topping the Best Seller list? Trust me, I adored it even more than the Kite Runner. You absolutely need to experience this book!